This summer I spent four weeks in China, at the Tianjin University International Summer School. The programme consisted of Chinese language and culture classes in the mornings and a chemistry lab internship in the afternoons.
Students from my lab and myself in the University Square on our way to the canteen for dinner. Food was a big part of the social life in Tianjin, where the students called going out for dinner a ‘party’
In the evenings, we had time to explore the city in order to get a better feel of the local Chinese culture. There was always something going on by the river Hai in the city centre
Before I went to China I was worried about the language barrier preventing me to become friends with the Chinese students. I didn’t need to worry as they were so welcoming and friendly that we often went out for meals and socialised. Here we are having ‘Chinese BBQ’
At the weekends we explored the nearby capital city Beijing and climbed one of the sacred Chinese mountains in Tai’an. Here we were in the Forbidden City, just off of Tiananmen Square in Beijing
The best lesson I learned from my time abroad was to appreciate people from all parts of the world. Even if you can’t speak the same language and have completely different cultures, I learned so much from the people I met in China in ways I couldn’t imagine